Technology with attitude

WhatsApp and Google – Forced By MI5 to Hand Over Encrypted Messages

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New laws are about to take effect in the UK, where the Conservatives want to force Google, Apple and Facebook to hand over encrypted messages from suspects (criminals or terrorists) to unravel their plans and annihilate them. These encrypted messages might be analyzed by MI5, MI6 and GCHQ.

Many spy agencies will be able to monitor suspects, having access to their online messaging and SNP could kill off Snoopers’ Charter, according to a new power that will be included in a new Investigatory Powers Bill. Initially, this bill was blocked by the Conservatives’ former Coalition partners, the Liberal Democrats, but they are determined to go all the way with the legislation. The bill was already announced in the Queen’s Speech and soon, the intelligence agencies will fight terrorism more efficiently. Besides, this way, human trafficking, other criminals, pedophiles (suspects) will be stopped before committing (any other) atrocities and Ofcom will take drastic measures against those that broadcast interviews with terrorists, extremists. On the other hand, children will be safer because the schools will be able to check if a candidate who applies for a job in an educational institution is “clean” and not a threat to children’s lives.

The only problem is the new style of online conversations, because the intelligence agencies might not decipher suspects’ plans on time, due to sophisticated encryption, which they might be able to crack. On the other hand, the internet companies are refusing to cooperate because they put consumer data privacy first.

A while ago, former CIA contractor Edward Snowden leaked classified information from the National Security Agency in which he exposed the illegal mass surveillance and this worried a lot of Facebook users who don’t want their private messages to be read by strangers.

Luckily, the advances in technology are giving headaches to the intelligence agencies, which can’t keep up with the encryption methods and the director general of MI5 said in January that the company should be able to intercept and read any type of content, no matter how advanced the encryption of the message is.

Robert Hannigan, Director of GCHQ, is dissatisfied with the refusal of the internet companies that care more about their customers’ privacy, but which neglect the hack attacks.